10.18.11

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Microsoft and Apple: The Bounty and the Beast

Posted in Apple, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents at 3:52 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Beast and beast

Summary: A review of some of the latest news about the Microsoft/Apple patent attacks on Linux/Android

THE PATENT war has shifted to growing markets where Microsoft is a minority, Apple was a growing force, and Linux is now taking over. Feeling pressured, Apple has been trying to embargo the primary Linux-based competition. Sadly for Apple, Samsung is not without patents, so Samsung strikes back [1, 2].

The Korean press writes about Apple’s legal attacks against Samsung and the press in Taiwan writes about the local company Quanta getting extorted by Microsoft (as covered here), which chose to turn Linux into its own cash cow through racketeering, as opposed to Apple which wants product removal and fabricates evidence to achieve that.

ThistleWeb (from TechBytes) links to this excellent new observations from Masnick, who sure knows how to summarise absurdities with a decent headline:

Can We Just Admit That It’s Insane When Microsoft Has A ‘Licensing Program’ For Someone Else’s Products?

[...]

Let’s sit back and consider the sheer insanity of this entire effort. Microsoft is going around, trying to get lots of companies to buy licenses to Google’s products, when there is simply no evidence that those products infringe on any Microsoft patents. And, notably, Microsoft has never sued Google over those products.

I’d be interested to see if anyone can explain how a system that allows a company like Microsoft to set up a licensing business on someone else’s products without any proven legal basis other than the implied threat that they might sue, is a functioning system? It’s a huge joke.

No, it is white-collar crime. As ThistleWeb puts it, “Microsoft need to be torn to shreds on racketeering charges for all their criminal activities around the world” (posted in Identi.ca as a response to the article).

The Quanta ‘deal’ puts a Linux tax on Kindle Fire, as we noted the other day. The Microsoft boosters write about other lawsuits that very much serve Microsoft’s interests and watch who is suing. Some articles label them “potent trolls”, but whose? This is a lawsuit we mentioned before and we also said a lot about the claimant, Acacia.

Microsoft Is lobbying for software patents in New Zealand again, based on this new article which says:

Software patents excluded
The policy also pledges Labour will enact and implement the draft Patent Bill currently before parliament that excludes computer software – a provision welcomed by many in the local software industry who see patents as impractical, expensive and often wielded as a market-blocking tool by larger companies, but opposed by Microsoft and other software multinationals based in New Zealand who see the move undermining intellectual property rights, and discouraging innovation.

[UPDATE: Microsoft corporate affairs manager Waldo Kuipers told NBR: "While you’re correct to say that Microsoft multinationals based in New Zealand oppose the proposed clause 15(3A), there’s far wider opposition to clause 15(3A) than that." Mr Kuipers said local companies including Fisher & Paykel Appliances, Aptimize and Intergen had also wanted software to be covered, not excluded, from the draft patent bill.]

Microsoft lobbies for software patents like no other company. It is amazing that some people still pretend that it is not a sign of trouble and Xamarin goes further by actually promoting yet more Microsoft patents overlap in as many platforms as possible. There are policy changes in Mono, but none of these addresses the patent problems. All that Mono does is, it is infecting many platforms with something Microsoft will claim to be its “IP”.

Apple and Microsoft remain the biggest problems Linux is having and it is easy to see why and how (patents). This site focuses on this one issue because it is most crucial.

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11 Comments

  1. Michael said,

    October 18, 2011 at 5:07 pm

    Gravatar

    Some of the false “advocate” FUD of this article:

    The FUD:
    —–
    Feeling pressured, Apple has been trying to embargo the primary Linux-based competition.
    —–
    No support for this at all. There is no evidence Apple is trying to stop Android. Apple is pushing back on Samsung for their wrong doing… their outrageous copying. Here is more evidence:
    http://goo.gl/NAIe0
    http://goo.gl/ewNY6
    http://goo.gl/S2AJR

    The FUD:
    —–
    Sadly for Apple, Samsung is not without patents, so Samsung strikes back
    —–
    Apple has never said they are against Samsung having patents, *and* Samsung is the one copying Apple… Apple is the one fighting back. The contrary claim is a direct lie from Roy.

    The FUD:
    —–
    The Korean press writes about Apple’s legal attacks against Samsung
    —–
    The article that Roy links to does not make the claim Apple is attacking Samsung… it notes they are suing each other and says they are “at war”. It also notes Apple seems to be in the lead – that courts around the world seem to be siding with Apple.

    The FUD:
    —–
    and the press in Taiwan writes about the local company Quanta getting extorted by Microsoft
    —–
    The linked article does not even mention extortion of any sort.

    The FUD:
    —–
    as opposed to Apple which wants product removal and fabricates evidence to achieve that.
    —–
    Apple is not asking for any products to be removed other than those which are illegally copying its IP… and the idea Apple fabricated evidence is not supported (the link goes back to Techrights… to a page with no support for the claim that *Apple* fabricated anything).

    FUD:
    —–
    Microsoft lobbies for software patents like no other company.
    —–
    This is completely unsupported.

    FUD:
    —–
    All that Mono does is, it is infecting many platforms with something Microsoft will claim to be its “IP”.
    —–
    Completely unsupported. For the facts on Mono, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mono_(software)

    FUD:
    —–
    Apple and Microsoft remain the biggest problems Linux is having
    —–
    Completely unsupported. And a bit silly and outward looking instead of seeing where the OSS community needs to improve.

  2. walterbyrd said,

    October 18, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    Gravatar

    > “There is no evidence Apple is trying to stop Android.”

    LOL! ROFLMO!! Please, stop it, you’re killing me!

    Oh, you’re serious?

    Here is an idea: stop lying. Everybody knows Apple is trying to win over Android by suing anybody that dares to make an Android device. What Android device maker has Apple not sued?

    Or is Apple trying to protect their valuable IP, like “rounded corners.” Yeah, that is supposed to be an Apple “invention.” As if the Joojoo/crunchpad did not have that years before.

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    In case you are not aware, “Michael” is an Internet troll (yes, by the definition) from USENET and elsewhere. He goes by the nickname “snit” there. I generally ignore his trolling, but he goes on forever, very obsessively.

    Michael Reply:

    If you really think I am just trolling and not pointing out your FUD, certainly you can show where my above claims are incorrect?

    Tell you what: you have, in the past, had me on your show and publicly invited me to be on it again. I accept that offer and would love to be on it. Then you can point out just how wrong I am.

    Deal?

    Wait. You know I would ask you to support your claims and would point out specific errors of yours you do not want to discuss. So, no, you will never live up to your offer.

    To your credit, though, you have not blocked my account here and do allow contrary ideas to be aired. I give you full credit and respect for that.

  3. walterbyrd said,

    October 18, 2011 at 9:21 pm

    Gravatar

    > “Apple is not asking for any products to be removed other than those which are illegally copying its IP… and the idea Apple fabricated evidence is not supported”

    I would think you were just ignorant, but I know that you are lying. Apple certainly has asked that Samsung products be removed. And it’s not Apple’s “IP” just a load of bogus patents about “rounded corners” and the like – which Apple did not invent. And trying google about Apple fabricating evidence.

    Michael Reply:

    See: you are posting false “advocate” FUD. Apple never claimed to have a patent on “rounded corners”. That is just an out and out lie.

    Yes: Apple has asked that Samsung’s copycat products not be sold… and the courts have agreed. Multiple courts.

    In addition to that, remember, I already showed where Samsung is – no doubt – copying Apple:

    http://goo.gl/NAIe0
    http://goo.gl/ewNY6
    http://goo.gl/S2AJR

    So where is your support?

    Hint: you have *none*. This is my point: Roy and those who parrot his claims are spreading FUD. It is not as though the claims are supported in any way.

  4. walterbyrd said,

    October 18, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    Gravatar

    FUD:
    —–
    Apple and Microsoft remain the biggest problems Linux is having
    —–
    Completely unsupported. And a bit silly and outward looking instead of seeing where the OSS community needs to improve.

    ——-

    Completely unsupported? Really? How many dozens of lawsuit have Apple, MS, and their proxies, filed against Linux companies, and Android makers? Just who do you think you’re kidding?

    Michael Reply:

    “Completely unsupported? Really?”

    Yes. But if you think otherwise then show it. And what are “Linux companies”? Any companies that use Linux? What?

    You are making many assumptions:
    1) You assume – with no support – that those who sue Samsung and the like are all wrong.
    2) You assume – with no support – that those who sue Samsung and the like are doing so because of Linux (or Android)
    3) You assume – with no support – that these lawsuits are the biggest problem for Linux.

    All of this is garbage. It is true, though, that the biggest problem for desktop Linux, for example, is that it does not compete well with OS X and Windows. Well, I guess you could say that means Apple and MS are the biggest problems – but I prefer to look internally.

    If those of us who support desktop Linux and the like want it to do well we have to stop whining that Apple and MS outcompete us and make desktop Linux better. Do you ever hear MS or Apple whine that they are being beaten by the competition and it is not their own fault?

  5. Needs Sunlight said,

    October 19, 2011 at 12:47 am

    Gravatar

    With Steve Jobs gone, how long before Apple fully succumbs to M$ third rate quality and way of doing things?

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Cook was behind the idea of suing Palm over patents.

    Michael Reply:

    Do you have support for this? If so, what?

    Not even saying you are wrong – just curious if you have support.

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